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Report: Patrick Patterson surrendered $1.2M to leave Thunder for Clippers

Detroit Pistons v Oklahoma City Thunder

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK- APRIL 5: Patrick Patterson #54 of the Oklahoma City Thunder stretches before the game against the Detroit Pistons on April 5, 2019 at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images)

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The Thunder are a taxed-out team willingly taking a step back and looking to trim costs.

The Clippers are early championship favorite and play in a desirable L.A. market.

No wonder Patrick Patterson wanted to move on. And no wonder Oklahoma City let him.

Patterson agreed to a buyout with the Thunder and will reportedly sign with the Clippers.

How much did he surrender to make that happen?

Bobby Marks of ESPN:

Patterson’s salary was $5,711,200. He’ll get $2,331,593 from the Clippers. With the $3.5 million giveback in the buyout, he’s down $1.2 million.

But as Marks said, the Clippers offer Patterson an opportunity to establish value entering free agency next summer. He’s the most archetypically sized stretch four on a strong roster.

The Thunder were $4,307,532 over the luxury-tax line. By reducing Patterson’s guarantee by $3.5 million and stretching the remaining amount, they get out of the tax.

However, Oklahoma City now has just 13 players. Signing someone else for the full season would put The Thunder back into the tax. They could skirt roster-size-minimum rules (essentially, 14 players) by signing someone to an unguaranteed deal and waiving him every couple weeks. Or they make another move to trim payroll.